Complex Extended Puns -- Real Groaners

     I love Shaggy Dog Stories. When I was Cubmaster our Cub Scout Pack had a tradition of having someone read a story at the beginning of every Pack meeting. The shaggier, the sillier, the better. A real groaner is best. Following is a collection I'm working on of Complex Extended Puns and Shaggy Dog Stories. Some of these are really good for a Pack meeting. Please send me your favorites and I'll include them here.

Table of Contents

Dogs in the Wild West

One hot and dry day in the Wild West, this dog walks into a saloon and says, "Gimme a beer". Evidently this type of thing wasn't too rare 'round those parts because the bartender said, "I'm sorry, but we don't serve dogs here." The dog then took out a silver dollar, dropped it on the bar, and said, "Look, I got money, and I want a beer." This scene had the potential to get ugly. The bartender, getting a little irate, said one more time, "We do not serve dogs here. Please leave." The dog growled, so the bartender pulled out a gun and shot the dog in the foot! The dog yelped, and ran out the door.

The next day, the swinging bar doors were tossed open and in walks the dog that had been in the saloon the day before. He was dressed all in black. A black cowboy hat, a black vest, three black cowboy boots and one black bandage. The dog looks around, waits for the talking to quiet down, and says, "I'm lookin' fer the man who shot my paw."

-- Thanks to Steve Poggio

The Very Special Bus

There once was this man who was looking for a job. He applied for a bus driver's job at the county board of education. The head of the school board granted him an interview. During the interview the man was told there was only one bus driver job left, the one that drove the special education bus. The man said he would take the job but the school offical asked that he look at the bus first. They went outside down a row of yellow school buses and at the end was a small van with Seasame Street characters painted all over it. The man was a little reluctant at first but the offical told him all the kids would be at the bus stops and all he had to do was pick them up in the morning and take them home in the evening. The man need the job badly so he took it.

The first day on the job he comes to the bus stop and there is a little girl standing there who is very fat. She gets on the bus and the driver says, "Hi! What's your name?" The girl replies, "My name is Patty" and takes a seat. He comes to the next stop and there is another little girl there who is fatter than the first. She gets on the bus and the driver asks, "What your name?". She says "My name is Patty" then takes a seat by the first girl.

At the next stop there is a little boy standing there. When he gets on the bus he says, "Hi I'm Ross and I'm special." At the next stop there is another little boy standing there and when asked his name he says, "Hi I'm Lester Cheatum". Lester takes the seat behind the driver, pulls off his shoes. He starts picking the loose skin on his bunyons and throwing it at the driver. This being the last stop, the driver takes the group of special kits to school.

This same scene happens every day for a week. On Friday the driver goes into the superintendent's office and say, "I quit! I can't take it anymore!"

When asked why the driver says, "Every day it's the same thing! Two obese Patty's, special Ross, Lester Cheatum picking bunyons on a Seasame Street bus".

-- Thanks to John Sugg

Dances with Cucumbers

May 5, 1863 -- Here on the frontier, I sometimes wonder if the ancients were right. With no other friendly face within 150 miles, it seems as if I _have_ fallen off the edge of the Earth.

I spend my time now reading what books I have and cultivating my patch of cucumbers (which I brought back from the Holy Land, cf. _Prince_of_Thieves_). The "purpose" of this fort, to hold back the Indians, has fallen away with my civilized veneer.

May 7, 1863 -- This morning I had an interesting and silent encounter. One of the tribe of Indians nearby watched me perform my morning tasks and then left without a word. I am excited by the prospect of contact with the natives of the area.

May 20, 1863 -- I have finally convinced the Indians to parlay with me. I taught them the word for "fort", feeling that it would be simple enough for them to learn. They in turn taught me the Indian word "titonka", apparently a small but tough, powerfully merchandised horseless carriage of metal construction. I envy these people their simplicity.

June 7, 1863 -- Today I visited the Indians' village. It is on one of the many flat-topped plateaus in the area. As the decline of the buffalo proceeds, so too does this Indian tribe face decline. I will try to teach them agriculture. They have also told me their name for themselves. It is "Anasazi"... which apparently means "people called Anasazi" in their language. I am called by them "Stinchapecsal" which means "he who should bathe more regularly".

July 8, 1863 -- A rude awakening. The Indians are fully aware of agriculture and in fact have nothing to do with the buffalo (what kind of nomadic tribe would build a village on a _mesa_?); unfortunately, they are suffering a drought.

Knowing a remedy, I have told them to dig a ditch from the nearby stream up the mountainside to their mesa-top fields. In the meantime, I am pickling my cucumbers.

July 20, 1863 -- The drought is desperate, but the ditch is finished and my pickles are ready. I am lining the ditch with pickles. The Anasazi are doubtful, but I have promised them results in the morning.

July 21, 1863 -- Success! The stream has been diverted and now flows up the mountainside to the Anasazi fields. Amazed by this seeming magic, I told them that it was simply a well-known fact in my world. After all, everyone knows that "dill waters run steep".

Thanks to Steven Andrew Wolfman

The Bush Pilot

A British bush pilot is flying on a job through the Australian outback when he encounters engine problems and is forced to make a crash landing. He survives, but is found unconscious and is taken to a local mission hospital which is run by the Sisters of Mercy. Upon awakening, he is greeted by the mother superior who advises him where he is and asks if there is anything he wants. He replies, "I am a bit thirsty...could I have a cup of tea?" to which the mother superior says, "I'm terribly sorry, but our supply truck is late and we are out of regular tea. However, we do have a sort of native drink that is brewed from koala hides." the pilot thinks awhile and replies, "Well, I just have to have my can bring me that, thanks."

The nun leaves and returns in a few minutes with a steaming cup. The pilot takes the cup gratefully, but upon taking a sip, instantly gags and spits it out. "This tea is filled with hair!", he exclaims disgustedly.

"Oh, I'm dreadfully sorry!" The nun replies, "I forgot to tell you: The koala tea of mercy is not strained!"

-- Thanks to Bill Snedden

Buford at the Bank

Buford, a fairly handsome Southern Bullfrog, hops into a bank lobby one day, brief case neatly tucked under his right foreleg. Buford hops up to the first open teller window and sits down in front of a teller, Miss Mary Greene. He announces, "I need a loan."

Miss Greene, not wanting to look too uncool with this frog talking to her, pauses only briefly to reflect on this situation, then says, "Well, the Everglades Savings and Loan doesn't usually give loans to amphibians." Quickly opening the brief case, Buford produces construction permits and blueprints. Showing them to Miss Greene, he says, "But I need a loan. You see I have this construction project in mind. Down in the swamp, we need affordable housing for all my in-laws and out-laws. I have the permits. Freddy, an architect newt friend of mine has drawn up the plans. Everything is approved and in order. So you see, all I need is the financing."

For Miss Greene, this is getting stranger by the moment. It isn't enough that there is this talking frog only inches in front of her, but now he is talking about plans, permits and a newt architect. Just before she loses it completely, Miss Greene blurts out, "I can't help you. You must see our loan officer, Miss Black. Wait here for a moment and I'll get her."

Miss Greene is gone for a while. After several minutes of animated conversation at the other side of the bank she returns with the loan officer. "Hello, I'm Miss Patricia Black, the Loan Officer here. How can I help you?" Well, Buford goes through his speach once again, tells her about the plans and permits, about the housing and his friend Freddy the newt architect. Thinking she could put an end to this foolishness quickly, Miss Black asks, "What do you have to put up for collateral for a loan? You must have something of value to mortgage against a loan like this."

Buford digs into his brief case once more. "I have this!" he exclaims as he draws forth a crystal trinket on a silver chain. "I can't give you a loan based on this THING," Miss Black says, pointing at Buford's treasure. Buford begs. He pleads. Finally, Buford demands to see the bank manager. Miss Greene, the teller, leaves for a moment to get the bank manager. Another animated conversation ensues at the other side of the bank. The manager comes over and asks "What's the problem, Miss Black?" "Well, Mr. Brown..." and the Loan Manager explains that the frog wants to take out a loan, to construct housing in the swamp for his in-laws and out-laws and he has plans and permits, but all he has is this trinket as collateral. The manager bemused by this whole situation, takes the trinket in hand, examines it carefully, then hands it back to Buford saying, "It's a knick knack, Patty Black. Give the frog a loan."

-- Thanks to Kevin Doyle , and elaborated by Gary Hendra

Let's try that one again...

A frog walks/hops into a bank, and asks to see someone about applying for a loan.

"Oh, Mr. Paddywack will be glad to help you," says the teller, looking down at the frog rather dubiously. "Just have a seat at that desk over there, and he'll be right with you."

So the frog sits down, and presently, the loan officer comes over. "Good day, sir, how may I help you?" he says, raising an eyebrow.

"I need a loan," says the frog, "I want to do some rennovations on my lillypond."

"Well..." says the loan officer, "we are not in the practice of approving loans for amphibians..." he said condescendingly, looking over the rims of his hornrimmed glasses.

"But why not?" exclaims the frog, "I've got an excellent credit record! I've never been late on my visa payment!"

The loan officer sighs. "Sir, I'm afraid we would need some type of collateral, and I'm-"

"But I've got it!" exclaims the frog. "I've got an extensive collection of hummels I can use as collateral-"

"I'm sorry," cuts in the loan officer, "but I don't think we'll be able to help you," he begins, but just then his supervisor comes up behind the desk.

"What seems to be the problem?" he says to the loan officer.

"Uh, um, Sir, this fro- um, gentleman, wanted to obtain a loan," says the loan officer, "but I've been trying to tell him that we can't-"

"I've got a hummel as collateral!" the frog breaks in.

"What in the world is a hummel???" says the loan officer condescendingly.

The supervisor looks exasperated. "It's a nick-nack, Paddywack! Give the frog a loan!"

-- Thanks to the Giant Panda, Tony Quon

Soviet Ingenuity

So the Soviets got sick of buying wheat from the Americans and began to spend millions on research into grains. Finally U.S. intelligence found out that the Soviet scientists had developed a new grain that yielded twice the harvest of conventional wheat and grew in half the time. Several agents died before it was discovered that the new grain was called "Krilk". The CIA was panicked! Without the Soviet dependency on American grains the security of the West could be forever compromised.

Congress quickly convened and appropriated several hundred million dollars for the CIA to send up spy satellites over Russia to learn the secrets of Krilk. Finally, after several years, the satellites began to send back images of the factory deep in the Soviet Union that was processing the Krilk. The CIA sent in over a hundred agents. None returned. The process remained a secret. The satellites were next to useless because they could only see the outside of the building, not the actual milling of the harvests. Finally the Soviet Ambassador in Washington sent a message to the President of the U.S. to let him know that all further attempts to learn the secrets would be futile.

The message read...."You are wasting your money. Everyone knows that it's no use spying over milled Krilk!"

-- Thanks to Steve Poggio

A Long Way to Go...

It came to pass that a very poor peasant was down to his last meal.

Deciding he could no longer live in squalor, he decide to sell the only thing he owned... his talking mule. This was no ordinary Francis type of talking mule, this one could tell jokes and sing and keep the local townspeople very happy. With much regret, the peasant sets off to the big city to sell his mule.

He sets up on a street corner and the mule draws an immediate crowd. The mule is so funny that the crowds can't remain standing because they're laughing so hard. Finally, a man comes up to the peasant and says "I'm a talent scout for The Tonight Show. I MUST have your mule for our show." Unfortunately, the talent scout had just been pickpocketed, and had lost his wallet. The only thing of value he had was a subway token. He convinced the peasant to trade the mule for the "Magic Token of Good Fortune" and secured the mule.

On the way home, the peasant realized that he had been taken, and he was broken hearted. He used his subway token to get him to the edge of the city. When he put the token in the slot, alarms went off and he was notified that he was the 1 billionth rider of the subway, and that he just won 50 million dollars.

Meanwhile, the Mule was so funny that he took over Jay's job, and eventually put Dave, Conan, John and every other late nighter out of business. The Morale of the story: A Mule that is funny is soon bartered.

-- Thanks to David Stribling

The King's Throne

In the deep forests of equatorial Africa, two rival tribes were constantly trying to outdo each other. Since they shared a common hunting area, one might set up fake prey decoys in order to have the other waste their time in useless locations while the first would then be able to hunt the better area with out having to worry about having their catch stolen at the last minute. At other times, they might kidnap a member of the rival tribe, and paint embarrassing pictures on the captive's body before releasing him(her) back to his own tribe.

The two tribes were mostly non-violent, choosing to avoid war, although skirmishes did result when one side or the other was seen as crossing the line past acceptable competition. On such occasions the two tribal Kings would meet to personally resolve the matter and even administer discipline if required.

On one occasion, a group of warriors of one tribe stole the throne of the other tribe's King. Although this throne was big and heavy, they dragged it through the forest to their own village and displayed it in the tribal gathering structure where the village held its ceremonial meetings and celebrations. The local King was very pleased with the prank, but was jealous of his rival having a bigger and better throne than he did. He knew that if the throne was not returned in a couple of days, the rival King would visit to retrieve the throne and demand the guilty parties be punished. On the other hand, he wanted to keep the throne for himself. The council agreed that the throne could be hidden in the rafters of their ceremonial house until the other tribe gave up looking for it; leaving the local King to claim it as his own in time. To celebrate this great achievement and their clever plan, a party was thrown in the ceremonial house that evening. While the party was in progress in the building, the heavy weight of the throne stowed in the rafters caused the whole edifice to collapse injuring many of the tribesmen inside. The rival King arrived and uncovered the whole plan, prompting him to remove the throne and to discipline the local King for participating in the theft.

The moral of the story is that people who live in grass houses, shouldn"t stow thrones.

-- Thanks to Elmer Thiessen

Roy Rogers and the Couger

There was this western town whose ranchers were being bothered by a cougar. This cougar had attacked the ranchers livestock on many occassions. The ranchers in this town hired the famous Roy Rogers to lead a posse to track down this cougar and kill him.

Roy lead this posse wearing his brand new alligator skin boots. he had just acquired them as was very proud of the way they looked.

After tracking the cougar for a number of days, they finally came upon him. Roy took a shot but missed, letting the cougar get away. That night the posse set up camp. While everyone was sleeping, the cougar attacked the campsite, but was chased off without anyone getting hurt. Unfortunately in the foray, the cat did destroy Roy alligator skin boots.

Roy was very upset about losing his new boots. He rode back to town (which was painful without boots), got an old pair of boots, and went out after the cougar by himself. After a few days of tracking, he caught up with the cougar. He picked up his rifle, aimed, and with one shot, killed the cougar.

He placed the cougar on the back of the horse and rode back to town with it. As the ranchers in town saw the carcass on the back of the horse they came out and cheered Roy's success. As he rode up in front of the hotel, surrounded by cheering ranchers and townfolk, Dale Evans came out of the hotel and asked, "Pardon me, Roy, is that the cat that chewed your new shoes?"

-- Thanks to Marc W. Solomon

The Chicken in the Library

A librarian is working away at her desk when she notices that a chicken has come into the library and is patiently waiting in front of the desk. When the chicken sees that it has the librarian's attention, it squawks, "Book, book, book, BOOK!"

The librarian complies, putting a couple of books down in front of the chicken. The chicken quickly grabs them and disappears.

The next day, the librarian is again disturbed by the same chicken, who puts the previous day's pile of books down on the desk and again squawks, "Book, book, book, BOOK!"

The librarian shakes her head, wondering what the chicken is doing with these books, but eventually finds some more books for the chicken. The chicken disappears.

The next day, the librarian is once again disturbed by the chicken, who squawks (in a rather irritated fashion, it seems), "Book, book, book, BOOK!" By now, the librarian's curiosity has gotten the better of her, so she gets a pile of books for the chicken, and follows the bird when it leaves the library. She follows it through the parking lot, down the street for several blocks, and finally into a large park. The chicken disappears into a small grove of trees, and the librarian follows. On the other side of the trees is a small marsh. The chicken has stopped on the side of the marsh. The librarian, now really curious, hurries over and sees that there is a small frog next to the chicken, examining each book, one at a time. The librarian comes within earshot just in time to hear the frog saying, "Read it, read it, read it..."

-- Thanks to Tony Quon

The Page

Once upon a time there was a large and prosperous Kingdom run by a wise and powerful King. Then disaster struck in the form of a strange plague, which caused people to sicken and die horribly within a few weeks. The population of the Kingdom was declining rapidly. All the physicians in the land were called to the Kingdom, but none of them had any idea of what to do about this new disease.

The oldest of the physicians said that he had once heard that many years ago, when his grandfather was a boy, the Kingdom had been struck by just such a mysterious sickness. The pestilence had been ended with a magic potion prepared by an old sorceress. It was said that she was still alive, but her home was in the middle of the Dark Forest.

"The Dark Forest!" everyone gasped. They all knew that the Dark Forest was the most dangerous place in the region. Perhaps the most dangerous place in the entire world, for in the Dark Forest lived the Yellow Fingers, which grabbed any traveler who entered and would squeeze him to death. But no one could come up with another plan to save the Kingdom, so it was decided that someone had to defy the Yellow Fingers and find the ancient sorceress in the middle of the Dark Forest.

The King called his bravest Knight and explained the situation. Without hesitation, the brave Knight marched off into the forest ... and was never heard from again.

The King then called his second bravest Knight. The second bravest Knight hesitated for a moment before going into the fatal forest. But once he went in ... and was never heard from again.

So the King called his third and fourth bravest Knights, who took a bit more persuading. None of them ever returned from the forest. Finally the remaining Knights, who were not very brave at all, went into hiding.

The King was reduced to a state of despair. Then one of the King's young pages, came to him and offered to go into the Dark Forest and get the magic potion from the old sorceress.

The King was touched by the boy's foolish bravery, but he said, "Don't you realize that the Dark Forest is the home of the Yellow Fingers, and that many of my bravest Knights have perished there?"

The boy said that he knew all about it, but he was still quite sure that he would be able to accomplish his mission. In the end the King reluctantly agreed to let the page go. He was so desperate that he didn't know what else to do.

The Page walked off into the Dark Forest, and the King confidently expected never to see him again. Therefore the King was not merely surprised but very nearly hysterical with joy when, two days later, the Page came walking out of the Dark Forest clutching the formula for the magic potion that would save the Kingdom.

"How did you do it?" cried the King

The page just smiled, and said, "From now on let your Pages do the walking through the Yellow Fingers."

-- Thanks to Merl Whitebook, Troop 1, Tulsa, Okla

A Tale of Two Pets

I remember it was about that time that Jim Sloane used to work in our Finance Branch. Now that was a character. He was, in my opinion, an unusual individual who was interested in some rather exotic subjects. The most unusual thing about him was his pet, (rumoured to have been captured somewhere in Africa) which reminded me of a piece of granite with eyes, which he called Teddy. Teddy typically just sat there, doing nothing, but sometimes it lifted a lower edge and sucked in powdered sugar. That was all it ate. No one ever saw it move, but every once in a while it wasn't where people thought it was. There was a theory that it moved when no one was looking.

Bob Laverty, a Management Services employee, constantly ridiculed poor Teddy, saying mean and nasty things about it. Laverty's pet looked like an iguana, and to me, at least, was the ugliest looking thing that you would ever want to see. He called this 'iguana' by the unlikely name of Dolly.

Well, one day Sloane had had enough of these comments, and challenged Laverty to a race. His Teddy against Laverty's Dolly. And to make things a bit more interesting, he suggested a rather hefty wager on the outcome, which Laverty quickly agreed to. Soon everyone got into the act. Every one of them bet on Dolly. At least it moved. Sloane covered it all. He'd been saving his salary for some time (for some exotic project, no doubt) and put every penny of it on Teddy.

The race course was set in the basement garage. At one end, two bowls were set out, one with powdered sugar for Teddy, and another with ground meat for Dolly. Dolly started off at once and began moving along the floor slowly toward the meat. All in attendance cheered it on.

Teddy just sat there without budging.

"Sugar, Teddy. Sugar." said Sloane, pointing. Teddy did not move. It looked more like a rock than ever, but Sloane did not seem concerned.

Finally, when Dolly had 'ran' half-way across the garage, Sloane said casually to Teddy, "If you don't get out there, Teddy, I'm going to get a hammer and chip you into pebbles."

That was when people realized how truly different Teddy was. Sloane had no sooner made his threat when Teddy just disappeared from it's place and re-appeared smack on top of the sugar.

Sloane won, of course, and he counted his winnings slowly and luxuriously.

Laverty said bitterly, "You knew the damn thing would do that."

"No, I didn't," said Sloane, "but I knew he would win. It was a sure thing."

"How come ?", said Laverty.

"It's an old saying everyone knows. Sloane's Teddy wins the race."

--Thanks to Jim Speirs

Freddy Fish

Freddy Fish and Sam Clam were the best of friends, and did everything together. One day, though, both perished in a freak mishap. Freddy Fish went to heaven, and immediately looked around for his best friend. Not finding him, he asked St. Peter where Sam was.

"Sorry, he didn't make it in."

"You mean he's down there?" asked Freddy.


"Well, I want to go see him!"

"This is highly unorthodox," said St. Peter. "I'll ask the big guy."

Moments later St. Peter returned and said:

"You can go, but you can only stay for one hour."

"Great!" said Freddy, and grabbed his harp before anyone changed their minds. He went to the elevator, and went down.

When the elevator doors opened, Freddy saw a huge sign:


He went in, and discovered that it was run by his old friend. They sat down and reminisced about old times, and had a few drinks. Time flew by, and when Freddy noticed his watch, he saw that he had fifteen seconds left to return. He jumped out of his chair, yelled a goodbye to Sam Clam, and raced to the elevator.

The elevator doors opened in heaven with only one second to spare. St. Peter was standing there with a stopwatch.

"You just barely made it," said St. Peter.

"I know," panted Freddy, out of breath. "But I have to go back there!"

"What do you mean!?!" asked an incredulous St. Peter.

So Freddy Fish says (* groan *):

"I left my harp in Sam Clam's Disco!"

-- Thanks to "The Giant Panda - B.J.O.D. Owner / Moderator"

A Hard Day's Knight

Many years ago a traveler came to the ancient land of Day. As he traveled through the country side he saw many fields and pastures. The people working the land all appeared to be peasants, living in abject poverty. However all he passed seemed to be in good spirits. Asking a peasant how he could be so happy while living in such an impoverished state the man told him that this land was ruled by a huge, intelligent and benevolent bear called King Mu. He continued to inform the traveler that while he was poor now he could, when he thought he was ready, participate in a kind of rite of passage and become a knight.

Asking what was involved in this rite the peasant replied,"You know the usual stuff, drinking till dawn, reciting sports scores from five years past, telling tall tales about women he had never met, discussing the advantages of the designated hitter rule, and many other things of similar difficulty." The traveler agreed that would be a grueling test indeed. "Tell me peasant, what are the rewards for passing such a test?" asked the traveler.

"Why, sir, when you are made a knight you receive all the goodies. You get things like a Royal Express card. No limit on those things you know sir. You can move to a nice Condo on the beach, and maybe even get a trophy wife to replace the one you got now."

"Amazing!", said the traveler ,"This I would have to see to believe."

"There's a test going on now in the capital." said the peasant.

So the traveler moved on down the road to the capital to see for himself if all was as the peasant had said. Passing through the gates and into the beautiful capital city he saw that the Festival of Testing was indeed in progress. In the center of the town, on a raised ornate throne sat King Mu, who was indeed a bear and looked that if he stood , would be at least twelve feet tall. Moving through the crowd the traveler saw three men standing before the throne. Two of the men looked to be in fine shape, clear of eye, with their collars buttoned down and wearing a neck scarf in a power color. Both had at some point in the competition won the honorary Rolex sun dial, which they wore on their wrists. The third man however, looked horrible. His eyes were blood shot, and as he stood holding his head, he looked like he was not to steady on his feet.

Rising from his throne the king approached the two men and placing a huge paw on each of their shoulders the king announced, " These two men I make knights and grant unto them all the privileges they deserve." Turning to the third man the king said, "This man did not however pass the test." With that he raised a paw and much to the traveler's horror struck the man down, killing him on the spot. At that point a king's aide brought forth a great shaggy dog , at least four foot at the shoulder, and presented it to the grief stricken family. Turing in shock and confusion, the traveler asked the man standing next to explain what had just transpired.

"Why, everyone knows," said the man, "there's nothing better, after a bad Day's knight, than the dog of the bear the hit you."

-- Thanks to Hugh & Terry Fitler

The Monks Tale

Three friars were banished from their monastery for various rule violations, so they decided to start a business together. They traveled around until they found a town that they liked, and opened up a plant shop. Their floral business was soon thriving.

One day, a woman was shopping at the friar's store, and while she was strolling down an aisle with her toddler, a large plant reached out, grabbed the child, and ate it. Needless to say, the women was quite upset at the loss of her child. However, the friars refused to believe that one of their plants could have done such a thing. The woman told all of her friends about the incident, and soon everyone in the town was in an uproar. They decided to kick the friars out of town. Every person in the town, except for a man named Hugh, gathered outside of the friars shop, shouting, waving sticks, and demanding that they leave. But the friars said "No. We're not leaving". So the townspeople gave up and went home.

Well, a couple weeks later, another woman was walking through the friar's shop, looking at plants with her baby, when a plant grabbed her child and ate it. She ran through the streets screaming that a plant had swallowed her baby. The townspeople were outraged, and again gathered outside the floral shop (except for Hugh), waving torches, and demanding that the friars leave town at once. But the friars said, "No way." and all the people gave up and went home.

A few days later, yet another woman dared to take her child into the floral shop. She held her infant tightly in her arms, but it was no use. A large ficus wrestled the child from her arms, and ate it.

When the townspeople heard of this, they were extremely upset. They again gathered outside the friar's store (except for Hugh), yelling and threatening bodily harm to the friars if they didn't leave town. But the friars said, "We're staying". So, the citizens gave up and began to go home. Just then, Hugh showed up. He walked up to the friars, and said, "Get out of town, now!". The friars immediately packed up all their belongings and fled that very day, never to be heard from again.

The moral of this story is: Only Hugh can prevent florist friars.

-- Thanks to Hugh B. Fitler

The Rabbi's Tale

There was once a rabbi who undertook a missionary-style trip to a South American rain forest country. He was to spend a year with a very primitive, remote tribe known only as the Trids. The rabbi knew that the only way to gain their acceptance would be to adopt all of their many tribal customs, such as dress, diet, studying their beliefs and so on. Much of this was difficult to learn for the city-born rabbi, but as the months progressed he grew in the many ways of the Trids.

One day, returning from an extended walk in the rain forest, the rabbi entered the tribal village to find the entire Trid tribe lined up side by side in the village commons area. Behind this line walked the tribal chief. One by one he would stop behind each tribe member and deliver a swift kick to the rear end. This, thought the rabbi as he watched, is one of the strangest rituals I've seen yet. But he knew that he must participate if he wished to win their confidence. Solemnly he took his place at the end of the line. The chief reached the end of the line and was just about to deliver the kick when suddenly he realized that it was the rabbi before him.

"I cannot do this thing", said the chief firmly. The rabbi was shocked. Wasn't he yet accepted by the tribe?

"Why not?" he asked.

The chief replied, "Silly rabbi! Kicks are for Trids!"

-- Thanks to Hugh & Terry Fitler

Alexander's Dilemma

The armies of Alexander the Great were greatly feared in their day, but there was one problem that they had that almost defeated them. Alexander could not get his people to staff meetings on time. He always held the meetings at 6:00PM each day after the day's battle was done, but frequently his generals either forgot or let the time slip up on them and missed the staff meeting. This angered Alexander very much, to say the least!

So he called in his research guys and set up a project to come up with a method of determining the time at 6:00PM each day. There were no clocks in those days, at least none that could be carried around. (The smallest was a giant water clock) "Find a way my staff can determine the hour of the day, or at least when it gets to be 6 o'clock!", he said, "Cost is no object."

A study was instituted and, with several brain-storming sessions, came up with the following idea. In a land some distance away, there grew a bush whose berries contained a type of dye that changed color at 6 each evening. They found that by dyeing strips of cloth and issuing them to the generals, they could see when it was 6 by the color change, and could get to the meetings on time. Needless to say this pleased Alexander very much.

It was then turned over to the marketing group to come up with a name of this new invention as Alexander saw definite market potential in the strips. "It can be worn on the wrist and can be easily watched for the color change", said one junior executive. "I therefore propose to call it the wrist watch." This name was immediately hooted down as being too bland and obvious. Another man suggested it be worn in the navel and could be observed by looking down, therefore it should called the Navel Observatory. This idea was rejected out of hand as being too weird and too technical sounding for the general public.

Finally the senior vice president, who up to now had been silent, spoke and rendered his decision. "We shall call it a Timeband, and in honor of the Great Alexander, it shall be known as 'Alexander's Rag Timeband!'

-- Thanks to Hugh & Terry Fitler

The Poor Little Dutch Boy

Life was desperate in rural Holland. As far as he could remember, the poor little dutch boy could remember nothing but hardships. Food was scarce, his father was abusive, and there was nothing to do after school but chores. Every day was another hardship. The boy loved to dive from the windmill into the canal, but his father hated to find that he had skipped out on his chores. Whenever he returned, his father would beat him. However, if he didn't skip out, his fater would find a reason to beat him anyhow. Life was nothing but hardships, except for the secret escapes to practice diving from the windmill.

Eventually the boy, now in his late teens, heard of a great contest in far-away Atlanta. The best divers in the world, along with the best of everything else would meet to decide who was REALLY the best. It would be the perfect escape from the hardships of his mundane life.

He runs away from home, sneaks aboard a freighter in Rotterdam and waits. No good. Of course, he is discovered. Beaten by the crew, bloody, he is sent home to his unimpressed father, who finds new hardships for him to endure.

A better storyteller than I could tell you of his next four or five attempts to get to the Atlanta games, each of which failed, yielding nothing but ever more painful hardships. The poor little dutch boy stoicly endured each of them, perservering and enduring.

Eventually, he stows away in a cruise liner heading for the USA. He isn't found until four days out at sea. The captain has the discretion of calling for a chopper to take him back to the Netherlands, or to let him continue the trip and let immigration in Atlanta deal with the problem. The captain listens to the boy describing how he's been doing difficult dives all his life, and how demonstrating the perfection he's developed to the rest of the world in Atlanta is his only chance to escape from the hardships of his normal life.

The captain decides to let the boy demonstrate his abilities. If the boy can execute a perfect dive from the top of the radar mast, he can continue to the Olympics. So, the radar is turned off, and the boy climbs the hundred feet to the top of the radar mast. He looks down.

He has never dived from a ship before. The gentle sway of the ship is magnified by the height of the radar mast. He didn't expect this. looking down, he sees ... pool, deck, sea, deck, pool, deck, sea, deck, pool... he jumps! ... and misses! He crashes right THROUGH the deck! Everyone runs for the stairs to see if he's OK. There's a splintered hole in the B deck. Even the metal decks of the C, D, and E decks have been burst. They find the crumpled body crumpled against the very hull itself, and even that is dented.

Everyone is astonished when he sits up, dazed, but apparently unhurt. The captain, horrified and apologetic, rushes forward. "My goodness! I never should have asked you to try that! Are you OK? " The boy shakes his head and answers:

"That's OK. I'm used to it. I've been through many HARD SHIPS before."

-- Thanks to Greg Goss

The Excaped Panda

A panda bear escapes from the zoo and is forced to live on his own. It turns out that he really enjoys eating in nice resturants, but of course being a panda with no job and no money he is unable to pay his bill. Being, also, an exceptionally intelegent panda he devises a scheme that lets him eat in any resturant he wishes.

One day he decides to try a particularly nice resturant but when he asks the maitre d' for a table he's told, "I've hear about you. Your the panda that never pays for his meal. We won't seat you here." So, the panda leaves the resturant and sits on a bench across the street from the resturant and contemplates his empty tummy.

Some while later the panda sees the maitre d' leave the resturant. The panda goes back and asks the assistant maitre d' for a table, and is seated by the assistant who has never heard about the panda's tricks. The panda has a wonderfull meal. (At this point you may "shaggy dog" this story as much as you like, or the audience will bear. Give details about the wonderfull meal the panda enjoys)

Just as he finshes desert the panda is aproched by the maitre d' who has returned to discover the assistant maitre d's mistake. When the maitre d' demands payment the panda pulls a gun, shoots the maitre d' and starts to leave. The assistant maitre d' stops the panda and asks, "Where do you think you are going?"

"I'm leaving." "You can't leave!" "Sure I can." "No you can't!"

At which point the panda produces the encyclopedia voulme "P", opens it and tells the assistant, "Read this."

The assistant maitre d' reads aloud: "Panda, an animal indigenous to China that EATS, SHOOTS and LEAVES."

-- Thanks to Dan O'Canna Lexington, Kentucky

The Big Headache

There once was a man who decided he had to visit Australia once in his life. He read up on everything he could find, visited all the Australian web sites on the Internet and saved his money so he could make this once in a lifetime vacation.

The day finally came when it all came together and he was ready to leave. He boarded the plane and some hours later stepped off the plane at Sidney International. Australia at last!

Unfortunately, on his first day sightseeing, he began to get a bad headache. Thinking it was probably just jet lag he took two aspirin and continued his tour. The headache didn't go away, however, so he asked the tour guide where was the best place to go for treatment. "Sir, you'll want to go to the emergency room at the Mercy Hospital", the guide told him, "Its not far from here."

At the hospital, the doctor suggested he stay there overnight for observation and he agreed. He was assigned a room and a nun who was a nurse came in to see him. When he told her about his headache, she asked him if he had tried their Koala tea. "Its made from the fur of the Koala bear and has great healing properties", she said. He said he was willing to try anything at that point and asked that she bring him a cup.

Presently, the nun came back in with a cup of liquid. He looked in the cup and saw it had a mass of hair in the bottom. Feeling rather nausous, he said he didn't believe he could drink the tea with all that hair in the cup. "Couldn't you strain it out or something", he asked.

The nun was indignant. She said, "Sir, I'll have you know the Koala tea of Mercy is not strained!"

- Thanks to Hugh & Terry Fitler

The Rope

I was Abilene's sheriff. I think I was the youngest sheriff in the territories. One afternoon, while I was playing 5-card stud in my favorite saloon, I happened to glance out towards the street.

I saw a rope ride into town.

Right away I knew it was trouble. Nobody likes ropes. This one had been riding all day. It looked as dry, and it probably smelled as bad, as the old straw broom that One-Eye Judd has been using in his stable for the last five years. The rope headed straight for the saloon where I was sitting, obviously hankering for good whiskey to wash away the trail dust. I could see how the rope moved like a cobra, maybe 30 feet coiled in the dust and ready to lash out. I checked my shootin' iron under the table, trying not to be obvious.

The rope used its "head" to push the saloon's swinging door open. It snaked its way across the floor to the bar, pulled itself up onto a stool and called for a drink. The bartender was a new fellow from Larame. He glared at the rope and said, "Are you a rope?" When the rope answered, "Yes", the bartender said, "Get out. We don't serve ropes in here." When the rope didn't move, the bartender carefully reached over the bar, took hold of the rope's main coil with one hand, while holding its "head" in a death grip with the other hand, walked to the door, and threw all 35 feet of the noisome thing out onto the street.

A couple of the men smiled, but nothing else happened. I relaxed and picked up my cards again. Apparently there wasn't going to be trouble. But then I heard someone bellow, "That stinkin' rope is heading for the other saloon! Let's get him!"

I looked at my cards -- 4 jacks. Why does trouble always wait till I draw a winner? I hurried out into the street, just as the rope entered the other saloon. I could see how tired the rope was, really dragging itself. I felt sorry for the poor thing, but I didn't let the townfolk see this in my face. One man can't fight an entire town, if you take my meaning.

In less time than it takes to load a six-gun, the rope came flying out the saloon door and landed in a heap in the middle of the street. Well, it was a rope. What else did it expect?

I knew this affair wasn't over. So I stood in the shadows and waited. After a few minutes, I saw two other ropes slinking down the far side of the street. They crossed over and began to talk with the newcomer. I could hear most of what they said.

"What happened to you?" asked one of the local ropes.

The newcomer described what had happened in each saloon.

"Oh," said third rope, "obviously you don't know the trick. Watch me."

The third rope unravelled both of its ends until they looked like paint brushes. Then the rope looped and twisted itself into a tangled mess. I wondered how it could keep track of itself like that, or even know where its ends were; but it scooted handily across the street and under the swinging door of the nearest saloon and up onto a barstool inside. I was impressed. Can you slide 100 feet on your stomach with your arms and legs twisted together? I guess ropes have the instinct for it. I watched as the bartender approached and asked suspiciously, "Are you a rope?"

The rope replied, "Nope, I'm afraid not."

-- Thanks to Cathy Porter, NATIVE TEXAN, Webelos Den Leader, Pack 1087

The Doctor

A doctor was just starting out on his own, when he found that he just had too much work to do. Now this man was brilliant, and had particularly good peple skills. Once he got a patient, they would just not see anyone else.

It seems that this man had been reading recently about the advances in cloning, and decided to have a clone made of himself to do his work.

For years it worked perfectly. His clone took care of all his patients, and he got to relax. However, the clone began to have some personality disorders. it would insult patients, and treat them very badly. It got soo bad that business was suffering. The doctor decided that he just had to get rid of the clone or loose his business. morning on their morning jog.... they jogged right over a bridge. The doctor pushed the clone over to his death.

The doctor again began seeing his old patients, and things were going exceptionally well, until a fisherman "caught" the dead clone body in the river. When the police found that the real doctor was still, in fact, alive, and that this was a clone, they didn't know just what to charge the doctor for doing wrong. After much deliberation, they decided to charge him for... Making an obscene clone fall.

-- Thanks to Cheryl Rogers

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